MONTH IN REVIEW: Flying High with GFI

Flying high with GFI

Board member Shaari Ergas catches air with Virgin America, Evan Knopf joins our ground crew and our new Facebook page launches across the interwebs…

As the first rains of the season hit the West Coast, it makes us here at GFI want to cuddle up and watch good movies til Spring. Before we do that, however, we’ve had some moves to make–in the air, on the ground, and on the internet.

First, while enjoying the in-flight entertainment courtesy of Virgin American and the Global Film Initiative, Board Member Shaari Ergas reflects on Sergio Teubal’s political comedy THE FINGER and Latin American film:

A scene from THE FINER

Watching THE FINGER was an enormous pleasure for me. The film opens to the sound of a finger thumping on a desk, set to music that gives the audience a sense of  foreboding. The film tells the story of a village that, in welcoming a newborn baby, is now thrust into the category of town. Along with that designation comes the right to vote and elect a mayor. THE FINGER includes a political campaign, a murder, marital infidelities, superstitions, and a glimpse of daily life in an Argentine village. This is just about everything one expects from a Latin American film: a story told in the manner of magical surrealism with the touches of humor and whimsy that are so typical of Latin American writers. In this film, the finger of the murder victim is used to represent the evil deed and provide a kind of moral compass.

Global Lens gets a good look on the seat-backs of Virgin America

Much pleasure came as I settled into my seat on board a Virgin America flight, made the Foreign Film category selection on the touch screen of video options, and saw that 7 of the 10 offerings were Global Lens films. I’ve been a member of the Board of Directors for the Global Film Initiative almost from the beginning. Virgin’s alliance with us was a powerful affirmation of our mission to bring developing world film to the U.S. to promote cultural understanding. Seeing that the majority of their foreign film programming is from the Global Lens series gave me a tremendous sense of pride, knowing that the audience also appreciates and embraces our efforts.

On the ground, GFI welcomed our newest staff member when Evan Knopf, Administrative Manager,  joined our ranks. Evan grew up in Louisville, Kentucky, where he spent his days playing competitive French Scrabble in high school. He recently moved to San Francisco, by way of San Diego, and brought with him a love of cats, an appreciation for  the musical stylings of Kate Bush, and sharp business acumen to boot.

Meanwhile, on the interwebs, we moved to a new and improved Global Film Initiative Facebook Page.

The new GFI Facebook Page is a great way to stay connected and get involved with independent foreign film: from education programs and filmmaker grants to Global Lens screenings and GFI events.

When The Global Film Initiative was established in 2002, Facebook was just a glimmer in Mark Zuckerburg’s eye. Tweeting was for the birds (as in actual, live birds). Even iPods were less than a year old. How times have changed!

Our brains work differently than they did ten years ago, and so do our businesses. We want our programs to help change the way you see and interact with the world. We hope you’ll ‘Like’ us on the new Page and join the dialogue!



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